Every year, my grandmother would light the holiday candles with long golden matches contained in a bold poinsettia box. I have no idea where she got them—some relic from the 1960s, no doubt—but ever since then I've had a fondness for vintage-style matchboxes.
Perfect for the holidays and winter months to come, today's favorites channel much of the whimsy and charm of the past. I think Grandma would approve.
Above: What to do with all those old library cards? Erin Roof makes them into these ephemeral matchboxes; $6.50.
Above: For all you cool cats out there, a vesta box is a safe, durable, and certainly stylish way to transport your matches. This one, designed in 1912 by HeinrichVom HofeSafer, is handmade in Germany from stainless steel. Available at Cooper-Hewitt shop; $40.
Above: The closest thing I could find to my Grandmother's matches, these vintage gold matches come in a rare California Savings and Loan box; $15.
Above: Offering innumerable designs, HomArt has one of the largest collections of vintage style boxes that I've ever seen; $3.95 each.
Above: It's killing me that you can't actually buy these matches. (If you know differently, please do tell!) They are a project by lighting designer Kaoru Mende for Kenya Hara's Re-Design.
Above: One of my favorites, extra long matches in black are both practical (fewer burnt fingers) and simply elegant; £4.60.
Above: This vibrant Bengali Tiger is one of many retro designs by A Fine Match Box Company, available at Present; £5.
Above: For adventurous types, Pro Force's survival matches are water and wind proof; $8.
Above: Sometimes American landscapes are as ephemeral as matches. Recording these vicissitudes, as well as the occasional continuity, artist Krista Charles takes salvages match books, locates the original establishment, and then sketches the current scene on the inside cover; $20 to $35.
N.B.; Looking for some illuminating products to go with your stylish matches? See 929 candles in our Accessories section.